F7-ALG2-2 - Methodological changes in teaching algorithms in the early years of the Computer Engineering course

1. Innovative Practice Full Paper
Rita Alamino1 , Rafael Santos1, Cléo Billa1, André Prisco1, Sílvia Botelho1, Regina Barwaldt1
1 Federal University of Rio Grande (FURG)

This Innovative Practice Full Paper presents new ways of teaching classes. The teaching methodology of the algorithm disciplines of the first years of Computer Engineering courses directly affects student performance throughout the course. The current education system is in transition, taking slow steps in new ways of learning. By promoting self-reflection and critical thinking, students can develop problem-solving skills and observe an application of the tools learned. A proposed methodology includes new structuring of the discipline Algorithms and Data Structures I at the Federal University of Rio Grande (FURG), with the learning of a modern programming language and the transformation of the classic classroom model to new methods and dynamics. Computational thinking is fundamental at the beginning of the course. From this, all students receive a course lasting three days at the beginning of the college year when students can learn, interact, actively participate, have older scholars' vision of Computational Thinking shared with, and immerse in dynamics to practice logic. Classes begin, students receive an extension to the basic learning of the discipline (the fundamentals of algorithms and Python as a modern programming language) and at the same time they received an assignment, a problem resolution, where they had space and time to develop a game with the theme of their choice. The activity requires teamwork and creativity. As lectures run as workshops, allowing collaboration and project creation, with the help of teachers and older students as tutors. To complete the program, an event made available by the university was used as an environment, for visitors, scholars as well for high school juniors interested in software, to attend and learn about. As a result of the new implementation methodology, after 4 years, there was an increase in the approval and average grade of learners and new entrants who joined the activity in previous years.